Struggling 76ers Fire Ayers After 52 Games
Randy Ayers lost his job after less than a season as the Philadelphia 76ers’ coach. And if things don’t improve, others might going too.
And leading scorer Allen Iverson would like some input.
The 76ers fired Ayers on Tuesday with the team 21-31 and 1 1/2 games behind Boston for the Eastern Conference’s final playoff berth. Assistant Chris Ford was named interim coach.
“Some things I was looking at, I just was not comfortable with,” General Manager Billy King said. “We’re going to be aggressive and see if we can do something to change the roster.”
He said he wouldn’t hesitate to make trades before the Feb. 19 deadline.
Iverson was surprised and upset by the firing.
“I feel like I’m supposed to be involved with a lot of stuff,” Iverson said of not being told the news by King. “I’ve earned the right to know some of the things that are going on.”
Ayers went from assistant to head coach when Larry Brown resigned after last season and took over the Detroit Pistons.
All but one of the Eastern Conference’s 15 teams (Atlanta, with Terry Stotts) have changed coaches since the end of last season.
Ford joined the 76ers’ staff last summer after two seasons as the coach at Brandeis. Ford has also coached Boston, Milwaukee and the Clippers, going 311-358.
Toronto Raptor guard Jalen Rose will miss at least five games after undergoing surgery on his broken left hand, ending his streak of consecutive NBA games at 286.
Rose, averaging 14.4 points and 4.7 assists, was injured when he collided with Golden State’s Clifford Robinson on Sunday.
Washington Wizard guard Larry Hughes, the team’s leading scorer, will be sidelined for four to six weeks because of a broken bone in his non-shooting left wrist.
Hughes, averaging 18.7 points, was injured during Wednesday’s loss to Memphis, though it was originally diagnosed as a sprain.
Though LeBron James has hinted at a possible surprise appearance, the Cleveland Cavalier rookie was not among the four players the league announced would take part in Saturday’s slam dunk contest at Staples Center.
Golden State’s Jason Richardson will try to become the first three-time winner against Boston’s Ricky Davis, Denver’s Chris Andersen and Indiana’s Fred Jones.
James, citing a sprained right ankle, turned down the NBA’s invitation to be in the event.